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Getting Ready for Knee Replacement: Preparing for Your Recovery

Preparing for your knee replacement helps make your recovery faster and smoother. You can even prepare for your rehabilitation, or rehab. This is the program you’ll follow after surgery. It will help you strengthen and use your new knee.Woman riding exercise bike. Health care provider is standing next to bike.

Why Preparing for Recovery Helps

The more in shape you are before surgery, the sooner you’ll be able to get back to activities you enjoy.

Help recovery faster by:

  • Strengthening and stretching your leg muscles. This helps to support the knee as it heals. It also gives you a head start on rehab.

  • Preparing to use a walker or crutches. Learn to use walking aids before surgery. This will help you get up and around sooner. Strengthening your upper body can also make it easier to use walking aids.

  • Preparing your home. Make some simple arrangements at home. These can prevent falls. They can also make daily tasks easier as you recover. This includes moving objects you’ll need within reach and asking in advance for help with certain chores.

You and Your Team

Your health care team may include:

  • A physical therapist (PT). He or she will design an exercise program to build strength and aid recovery.

  • An occupational therapist (OT). He or she will help you make daily activities safer and easier during recovery.

  • An orthopaedic surgeon. He or she will perform the surgery and oversee your care.

  • A nurse or case manager. He or she will coordinate your care.

Understanding Your Role

When it comes to preparing for recovery, much of the work is up to you. So make time each day for the exercises you’ve been given. Always follow the instructions that your physical therapist or surgeon gives you.

 

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